It should not come off as a surprise that East Austin is just as classic and eclectic as Austin, TX. But did you know that it also features some of the best dining spaces? In fact, East Austin restaurants, bars, and coffee shops make it a popular destination for locals and visitors alike.
But it can be hard to choose places in East Austin for coffee, breakfast, lunch, brunch, dinner, happy hour, and dessert. Not to mention, the bars and breweries are also absolutely worth trying. If you want to try out the best restaurants on your next visit, you are in the right place.
This is your ultimate guide to the best East Austin restaurants, coffee shops, and more.
East Austin has more coffee shops than any other neighborhood in Austin. Some popular coffee shops include:
Flat Track Coffee
Located in East Austin, Flat Track Coffee Roasters is a moto and specialty coffee roaster café. The roasting approach of this bike shop ensures that the sweetness, acidity, and unique flavors of the coffee beans remain.
Cenote serves amazing coffee, making it one of the most popular coffee shops in East Austin. In a Circa 1887 bungalow house, it also serves a full food menu made with the finest ingredients. Cenote gets its vegetables from several Texas farms, whereas the pasture-raised eggs come from Vital Farms. Flying Pig Provisions supplies premium quality bacon to Cenote. Lastly, don’t forget to try out some of their excellent wines and beers.
1010 E Cesar Chavez St
An East Austin coffee shop and café, Revival cafe looks forward to serving local residents for many years to come. The latest project, Revival Coffee, is a member of the Gabriela’s Group (locally owned and operated). All about the vibe, the pink design and setting definitely attract new customers to the cute café.
More coffee shops:
- Caffe Medici – Caffe Medici has multiple locations throughout Austin but this location houses the roasting facility
- Cuvée Coffee – coffee roaster with pour-over espresso and nitrogenated cold brewery is its specialty
- Greater Goods – curated selection of specialty coffee in a converted warehouse coffee shop
- El Tigre – a perfect spot for locally roasted coffee beverages
- Fleet Coffee – a tiny coffee shop with both classic and creative coffee drinks
- Houndstooth- A contemporary coffee shop with carefully crafted coffee
- Thunderbird Coffee – a neighborhood coffee shop with an outdoor patio area (must try: Thai Iced Coffee)
- Sa-tén Coffee – a Japanese coffee shop that serves all; breakfast, lunch, and dinner
- Wright Bros. Brew and Brew- an industrial space with some of the best coffee and craft brews
East Austin makes the most important meal of the day also the best one. You will find everything from tacos and pancakes to sausages and biscuits.
Bird Bird Biscuit
Bird Bird Biscuit is a cherrywood breakfast shop that serves some of the best fried chicken biscuit sandwiches. Specialties include Bird Bird Bacon stuffed with bacon, cheeses, and eggs, as well as the Lovely Day Sandwich. The latter is the perfect breakfast if you like chicken sausage patties as it is stuffed with just that, along with eggs, basil pesto, and cheese.
Cisco’s restaurant is a Mexican restaurant, Tex-Mex, as you would say. Founded in 1950, today, it serves the best breakfast in East Austin. Make sure to try out their Wolf Omelet, Fajitas, Picadillo, and Breakfast Tacos.
Established in 2012, Hillside Farmacy is an East Austin restaurant that serves locally sourced foods and some of the most delicious cocktails in town. Originally a 1950s pharmacy cabinetry, today it is a beautiful full bar and farm-to-table restaurant.
Veracruz All Natural
Veracruz never fails to serve morning-perfect, all-time favorite breakfast tacos. The locals love Veracruz for their tacos but also for their spacious dog-friendly location at Webberville.
More breakfast spots:
- Blender & Bowls – must try: Acai bowls and Acai smoothies made with superfood ingredients, Bird of Paradise with goji berries and an added scoop of almond butter
- Joe’s Bakery – a family-run restaurant serving authentic Mexican breakfast (all day) and lunch
- Juan In A Million – Mexican restaurant with the cheapest and most generous Tex-Mex breakfast portions
- Paperboy – then small food trailer and now brick and mortar serving mouthwatering breakfast and lunch
There are many great lunch options in East Austin, TX. You will find everything from burgers and tacos to foods with an Indian fusion as well.
Discada is especially popular for its cooking technique known as cowboy-wok cooking. It involves using a tractor plow disc to slowly simmer meats and vegetables. You will be hard-pressed to find this unique flavor elsewhere. Don’t miss out on the Discada tacos!
The recipe for the mouthwatering, juicy Central Texas bbq is exclusive to La Barbecue. The menu features salty and savory flavors, with no added sugar, even in the coleslaw. Make sure to try the brisket and beef ribs.
Established recently in the year 2019, Uroko features a casual, relaxing, and fun setup. Don’t forget to walk in with your friends to try the Tamaki sushi hand roll next time you’re in East Austin. Furthermore, the Japanese restaurant is super affordable.
More lunch spots:
- Buenos Aires Café – Authentic Argentinean restaurant (Must try food: empanadas)
- Dai Due – a butcher-shop restaurant featuring a delicious farm-to-table menu
- Casa Columbia – a South American Colombian restaurant serving authentic dishes
- El Chilito – must try for a quick lunch: Beef Puffy Tacos
- Franklin Barbecue – a famous barbecue restaurant for smoked meats like pulled pork and brisket
- Kinda Tropical – a retro all-day cafe with a big dog-friendly backyard patio (3501 E 7th St)
- Micklethwait Craft Meats – barbecue trailer serving sides and desserts
- Tamale House – Mexican restaurant popular for breakfast tacos, migas, and big tamales
- Ramen Tatsu-Ya – a branch of Austin’s most popular ramen noodle restaurant in East Austin
East Austin restaurants are recently developing their own unique personalities as it grows to become a better place for dining. Here are some restaurants you should definitely visit for dinner.
Established recently in 2019, Cuantos Tacos specializes in serving the best Mexico street-style tacos. This East Austin restaurant especially focuses on delivering tacos and quesadillas only similar to those you would find on Mexican streets. Don’t miss out on this food trailer if you enjoy Mexican flavors and tacos.
El Bruto, which translates to ‘The Ugly,’ was established in 2018 and referred to the spaghetti film ‘The Good, The Bad and The Ugly. This neighborhood Italian spot is perfect for authentic Italian cuisines. The fresh, homemade pasta is a must-try, while other options on the menu include pizza and fresh antipasti.
The Old Thousand restaurant specializes in serving American Chinese comfort food dishes that have just the right hint of East Austin flavors and style. Its vibe is both fancy and funky, surely something you will love if you’re in East Austin for the first time. The hipster space also serves delicious craft cocktails. I love the brisket fried rice.
Looking for a chic space to dine on traditional Korean food while enjoying excellent cocktails? Oseyo, established in 2019, is your answer. The modern Korean-American restaurant features a garden courtyard and rustic interior setting, serving both traditional and non-traditional dishes.
Jacoby’s is one of the best Southern-inspired restaurants in Austin. Located Eastside, it is a farm-to-ranch restaurant that sources all its beef supply from its own family ranch in Central Texas. Some popular dishes include Chicken-fried Steak, Cheeseburger with Fries, and Grandma Hagler’s Strawberry Cake.
More dinner spots:
- Birdie’s – a wine bar that also serves seasonal American cuisine featuring French and Italian influence
- Canje – an upscale restaurant serving four extensive menus featuring Caribbean cuisines (1914 E 6th St ste c)
- Sammataro – one of the best wood-fired pizza trailer
- El Chile – most popular for its puffy tacos and margarita
- Fukumoto Sushi – must try: Japanese Izakaya with traditional sushi, nigiri, and yakitori
- Grizzelda’s – a cute Tex-Mex restaurant with a pink wall worth posing with for Insta-worthy shots & really good queso
- Intero – farm-to-table Italian pasta, En-Trees, and artisanal chocolate
- Il Brutto – wood-grilled pizza and Aperol Spritz
- Justine’s Brasserie – a bungalow space with a light-strung patio serving great French food and cocktails
- Kemuri Tatsu-Ya– an Izakaya bar that serves flavors of both Japan and Texas
- Mi Madre – botanas, tacos, burritos, and platos
- Nixta Taqueria – a taco shop serving homemade corn tortillas with unconventional toppings
- Launderette – a classy New-American restaurant in a converted Laundromat
- Patrizi’s – a food trailer serving homemade Italian pasta
- Rosewood – a historic 1890s home restaurant serving famous cuisines of South Texas
- Swift’s Pizza – a neighborhood pizzeria serving both custom and signature pizza flavors
- Suerte – a contemporary Mexican restaurant focused on serving Masa
- East Side King – get the crispy Brussels sprouts salad
From cheap eats and hangover brunches to a fancy brunch with friends, East Austin offers all. Here is a list of must-try brunch spots.
Grizzelda’s is your ideal option if you’re looking for a weekend brunch date or family time. It has a unique brunch menu with $5 mimosas, Bloody Marys, house margaritas, and even beer. Make sure to try their Horchata French Toast and Churro Chicken & Waffles.
Suerte is a Mexican-inspired East Austin restaurant that specializes in serving homemade tortillas with also homemade Masa. Some other items on the menu that are worth giving a shot include Shrimp Tostada and Lengua Taco. Remember that Suerte is only open on Saturdays and Sundays.
1800 E. 6th St
Operational since 1958, Tamale House is one of the oldest East Austin restaurants that serves delicious Migas and tamales to date. Make sure to try at least one of Tamale House’s homemade sauces. Mom’s migas, Chicken Tamales, and Pork Tamales are perfect for ordering brunch with friends.
More brunch spots:
- Il Brutto
- La Barbecue
- Tamale House
- Grizzelda’s – all night Wednesday, Thursday & Friday, 5-6p, $5 cocktails & 25% off all appetizers
- El Chile – every day, 3-6pm
- Eastside Tavern – Monday to Friday, 3-6pm
- Fukumoto – Monday to Thursday, 5–6:30pm
- Kinda Tropical – Monday to Friday, 3-6pm
- Nasha – Monday to Friday, 4-7pm
- Launderette – Monday to Friday, 5-6pm
- Licha’s Cantina – Tuesday to Friday, 4-6pm
East Austin has a lot of different cocktail bars, wine bars, and more.
Domo Alley-Gato draws inspiration from tachinomiya, or standing bars, and yokocho, meaning “alleyways off to the side of a main street” in Japanese, transporting guests to the vibrant, buzzing nightlife found in some of Japan’s biggest cities. A familiar menu of drinks are available, from craft cocktails and DIY Chu-Hi to the fan favorite, Kirin Ichiban Cold Caps, plus a selection of sake and beer curated by Tatsu-Ya sake sommelier, Bryan Masamitsu Parsons. A limited bites menu complements the cocktails, featuring the return of the beloved fan favorite, the Karē Ban Ban Dog, a teriyaki beef frank in a fried panko brioche bun topped with Domo Karē chili. Additional bites like pork dumplings, twice-fried chicken karaage with garlic aioli and spicy edamame round out the menu.
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Cape Bottle Room
Wine tasting room focused on South African wines and is actually the only exclusively South African wine venue in the U.S. All the wines are social and environmentally sustainable and available by the glass or by the bottle. Tasting room fits up to 50 people, perfect for private events.
Private wine tasting room focused on wines in the West Coast – California, Washington, and Oregon. You won’t find any of these bottles in stores as they have been hand selected by their somms at the vineyards.
It is that one bar in East Austin that can instantly take you to Palm Springs circa the 1970s. Kitty Cohen’s features a beautiful tropical theme with palm trees all around and tropical cocktails as well. The retro bar also has a mini pool to dip your feet in.
Upon visiting the Nickel City bar, you will find that it is the perfect combination of a fancy dive bar and a retro dining area. It has the best bar food you can find with delicious craft cocktails and the finest beer.
- Ah Sing Den – an Asian-themed bar serving amazing Good Tipples, Morsels, and hot and cold dishes in an intimate interior setting
- drinks Lounge – neighborhood bar on East Cesar Chavez with a full bar and delicious bar food every night ’til 2am + brunch on the weekends
- Easy Tiger – the third location of Easy Tiger features a massive dog-friendly outdoor space
- Grackle – a hipster bar with a pool table, billiards, and jukebox
- Native Hostel – a cool and modern hostel with a fantastic kitchen and bar facility
- Lustre Pearl – a chill hangout spot for drinks and relaxing
- Shangri-La – a bar featuring a dog-friendly patio and an amazing beer garden
- The Liberty – one of the oldest bars serving great late-night snacks
- The White Horse – a honky-Tonk bar with live country music and an outside taco truck
- The Vortex – an artist-owned theatre that hosts regular community events
- Whisler’s – an Austin specialty for craft cocktails
There are a few breweries in East Austin:
- Blue Owl Brewing – Austin’s first sour mash brewery
- Central Machine Works – a microbrewery beer hall in a converted machine-work space serving a pub-grub menu
- Lazarus Brewing Co – a cozy brewery and coffee shop serving house tacos, kombucha, espresso, etc
- Zilker Brewing Co – an urban craft brewery and taproom with a Spicy Boys food truck
If you’re looking for dessert in Austin Eastside, here are some options.
- Amy’s Ice Cream – an East Austin branch of the popular Austin ice cream shop
- Capital City Bakery – a vegan bakery serving fresh cupcakes, cookies, and cakes
- Gati – a vegan ice cream shop serving gluten-free treats by Thai Fresh
- Gelateria Gemelli – a modern gelato shop and Italian cocktail bar in one
- Lola’s Donuts – a walk-up window donut shop with a cute flower wall (2406 Manor Rd)